December 2, 2011
Occupy Barnes & Noble?
Writing this week’s cover story was a reminder of how much people who love bookstores really love them. And checking my messages at the office today showed me that at least one reader was inspired by what he read—although incensed might be a better word for it.
“I think somebody should do an “Occupy Barnes & Noble” and do something that lets people know what they’re about to lose,” said Steve, who didn’t leave his last name on my voicemail.
Steve said he had called Barnes & Noble and the Westside Pavilion to hear for himself why the bookstore at the corner of Pico and Westwood would be closing on December 31—and what he learned was identical to what I reported in this week’s cover story, “The Bookstore Is Dead.”
A representative from the bookseller told him that the Westside Pavilion was asking for double the existing rent; the landlord’s rep said that they had done all they could to keep the bookseller in place, but that Barnes & Noble had ultimately made the decision to leave.
In addition to the “Occupy” idea, Steve did suggest that perhaps a strong power broker from the one percent might be able to help keep the Barnes & Noble from closing.
“They should get the Westside Pavilion people and the Barnes & Noble people together in a room and make them an offer they can’t refuse,” he said.